June 14, 2024
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Join Jews Around the World and Unite This Shabbat in Solidarity With Israel

(Courtesy of The Shabbat Project) The Shabbat Project, an international movement that brings together Jews from around the world to keep one Shabbat, is gearing up for its most important year yet. In the wake of the horrific Hamas terrorist attacks, this year’s message is “Keeping it Together for Israel.” From sundown on Nov. 3 to nightfall on Nov. 4, participants are invited to keep Shabbat together as a demonstration of Jewish pride and Jewish unity and a message of solidarity with Israel.

“Our brothers and sisters in Israel are under attack. Lives have been lost, families shattered, and many are suffering the horrors of captivity. These barbaric attacks launched by Hamas were not about borders or political objectives—they target the very existence of the Jewish people,” said Chief Rabbi Dr. Warren Goldstein, chief rabbi of South Africa and the founder of the Shabbat Project.

“This war is about who we are and what we stand for—an ongoing attempt to uproot our eternal values and history. We must let the world know that we will not succumb, submit, or forsake our eternal values. It’s no coincidence that Hamas attacked on Shabbat—Shabbat is who we are. It is the very soul of the Jewish people. Therefore, this year’s Shabbat Project is a call for every Jew in every corner of the globe to keep Shabbat from sunset. A sublime moment of global Jewish unity. One people. One heart. One Shabbat,” he continued.

Despite the war, Israel will participate in the Shabbat Project as it does every year. “We will continue to hold events,” said Aharon Ackerman, who runs the project in Israel. “They may look slightly different—in Ofakim, for example, events are being planned in shelters to protect residents from missile fire and security concerns. But we will continue to move forward.”

Plans in Israel include Shabbat dinner in a Jerusalem hotel for evacuees from the North and South; a challah bake in Eilat for evacuees; distributing thousands of challahs, candles and Shabbat food to families with a parent in military service; and providing supplies to 60 shelters to bake challah.

“We are in awe of the bravery and strength of the people of Israel,” said Goldstein. “We are not only ‘keeping it together for Israel,’ we are keeping it together with Israel.”

Since its inception in South Africa in 2013, the Shabbat Project has grown, under the leadership of Goldstein, into a global phenomenon. This year, an estimated one million people in over 1,500 cities across 100 countries, will participate in various activities such as challah bakes, learning groups, community dinners, Havdalah ceremonies and Shabbatons. In combination with these unity events, the Shabbat Project encourages participants to observe Shabbat—lighting candles, disconnecting from devices, not going to work, enjoying festive family meals, attending synagogue services and engaging in spiritual reflection.

Worldwide events this year will take place in cities and countries including France, Switzerland, Belgium, Guadeloupe, Panama and Tokyo. In the United States, there will be a “unity kiddush” held jointly by five synagogues in Atlanta, a “Shabbat shuk” and a Shabbat meditation workshop in San Diego, multiple open invitation Shabbat buffets with kiddushes throughout Boca Raton neighborhoods, and many other events expected to reach thousands of Jews across the political and religious spectrum.

Join the Shabbat Project on Nov. 3-4 and experience the power of global connection at a time the Jewish world needs it most.

For more information about the Shabbat Project, visit www.theshabbatproject.org

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